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World Bank to give $1 m for social businesses

The Hindu Business Line:  January, 2013

New Delhi: Social enterprises are set to get a $1-million boost from the World Bank Group, which has announced the launch of 2013 India Development marketplace.

The World Bank-funded Development Marketplace, a competitive grant-based programme, focuses on non-profit and for-profit business models that provide solutions for social and economic problems being faced by poor communities. The Bank has pledged a grant of $1 million for the programme.

The programme for 2013 would target organisations in Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh.

About 15-20 organisations would be selected and each would receive $50,000 to $100,000, along with mentoring and capacity building support over 15 months.

Besides this, the World Bank would also help the winners select local partners to guide them in the areas of business planning, financial management and organisational development.

In the last decade, the programme has supported a number social enterprises, including Goonj – focusing on waste resource management; Drishtee – rural kiosks for access to public services and Gram Vikas – which provides biogas electricity for tribal communities in Odisha.

Drew von Glahn, Team Leader of the World Bank Institute’s Development Marketplace programme, said, “We look for these organisations to increase their ability to scale their operations, access follow-on growth funding and ultimately position themselves to have long-term social impact.”